Ode to Childhood Knife

I think of myself as a person who owns a grapefruit knife.

I recently bought a bag of grapefruit on sale at the grocery. At home, I cut one open, and reached into our “everything but the silverware drawer” to rummage for the grapefruit knife. I know what it looks like; it has thin metal blade that is bent and serrated, and an unfinished wood handle.

At an age when I have now lived outside of my parents’ house for longer than I lived in it, I still think of myself as possessing this grapefruit knife, when, in fact I have never had a grapefruit knife—my parents have this grapefruit knife.

I have a pumpkin carving knife. It is short and serrated, but the blade is thicker and not bent, and it has a purple molded plastic handle with jack o’ lanterns in the design. For the last several years, when I’ve reached into whatever drawer (in whatever house or apartment we are living in) to look for the grapefruit knife, I have ended up using this knife, but for some reason it hasn’t made an impression on me. It makes me a little sad for the knife actually. It’s like the girlfriend who can never compete with memories of the ex. Henceforth, I will try to remember to think of this knife first. To say to myself, “I’m going to prepare this grapefruit, I’ll just get that cute little purple handled knife to do the job!”

But truthfully, I’m going to try to remember to look for a grapefruit knife next time I’m out. They really do work well, don’t they?

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